How Stress Affects Your Eyesight

Jun 27, 2016 in Eye Care

Family conversing round table

How can stress affect your eyes?

In today’s fast moving, hyper-connected world, hardly anyone is a stranger to stress. Whether it’s work-related issues or in your personal life, stress has become a constant companion for many people. Stress is directly linked with conditions such as heart diseases, diabetes, depression etc. However, it is not widely recognised that stress can impact your eyesight as well.

Stress and your eyesight

  • Many people experience a twitch in the eye when they are stressed. This occurs when the tissues and muscles around the eye move involuntarily. While eye twitch is not a serious condition, it can certainly be annoying and can interrupt your concentration at work.
  • Work-related stress can be due to tight deadlines and other pressures, exacerbated by long hours staring at computer screens combined with a lack of sleep. This is the perfect recipe for eyestrain and potentially even computer vision syndrome (CVS). This can manifest as severe headaches, redness in the eyes, irritated or watery eyes and blurry vision.
  • High blood pressure, or hypertension, is one of the earliest side effects of stress. When your blood pressure goes up, blood vessels in the eye can leak, which can lead to a loss of vision.

What you can do

While it may not be possible to completely eliminate stress from your life, it is possible to manage it to help you to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Here are some stress-busting tips:

  • Take a break – from what’s causing the stress. Sometimes a short holiday or just putting some distance between you and the stressor can work wonders
  • Use the 20-20-20 rule – if you work at a computer, rest your eyes every 20 minutes by looking 20 metres away for 20 seconds, and blink 20 times to help prevent your eyes drying out
  • Exercise regularly – the endorphins released during physical activities are beneficial for your mental wellbeing
  • Meditate – this helps the body to relax and release emotions that cause stress
  • Get enough sleep – rest is the best cure to most stress-related symptoms
  • Get social – friends and family can give you that much-needed social support when you’re stressed

Regular eye tests

Apart from stress management techniques, a regular eye test will also help make sure that your eye health is not getting adversely affected by stress. At Leightons Opticians and Hearing Care, we not only carry out a comprehensive eye test but can also offer a thorough lifestyle assessment.

Visit one of our branches and experience a warm, friendly and welcoming service. Our staff will put you at ease and answer any questions you may have. A complete eye examination takes about 30-45 minutes.

We also offer an OCT (Optical Coherence Tomography) scan, which is like an ultrasound for the eye. It can detect early signs of many eye-related problems and even symptoms of conditions like diabetes and cardiovascular ailments.

So book an eye test with Leightons Opticians and Hearing Care and let us help you to protect your eyes against stress. Visit one of our branches, call us on 0800 40 20 20 or book an appointment online today.